KOCHI: The Kerala High Court on Friday directed the secretaries of Kochi Corporation and Greater Cochin Development Authority (GCDA) to appear in person on August 14 to inform the court about the specific time needed to address issues concerning Marine Drive walkway.
The division bench issued the order on a petition filed by Ranjit G Thampy, Chittoor Road, Ernakulam, citing the dilapidated condition of Marine Drive walkway.
Commissioner of Police, Kochi city, informed the court that police officers in three shifts have been deployed to ensure 24X7 surveillance, and a police aid post is also being set up on the walkway. However, certain issues require immediate resolution through the joint efforts of the GCDA and Kochi Corporation. The court noted that the GCDA affidavit was evasive about the responsibility of the authority to maintain the walkway. GCDA had given details about the contracts entered for collection of waste and security arrangement, but there is no indication in the affidavit regarding the time frame within which steps have to be taken to resolve the issues.
The court expressed displeasure over the stand of the Kochi Corporation for not filing an affidavit till date. The Corporation’s stand is that it has no role in the upkeep of the walkway, Instead, it is the GCDA’s responsibility. On a query put forth by the court on who was responsible for maintaining the walkway, counsels for Kochi Corporation and GCDA were unable to inform the court as to whose responsibility it was.
Police point out several issues that need immediate resolution
●Proper lighting on the entire walkway
●Installing CCTV cameras along the walkway
●Repairing and replacing damaged tiles and finding a solution to water-logging on the
●Erecting signage and warning boards in different languages
●Initiating action to evacuate unauthorised vendors
●Street vendors should be confined to a particular area and Corporation may be directed to demarcate the area
●Providing toilet facilities
●Clearing bushes and creepers
●Ensuring continuous maintenance of lights, cameras and walkway by GCDA or Corporation by engaging an agency
●Repairing damaged benches